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Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Herbal Therapy - Arctostaphylos uva-ursi

Bear berry are 3 species in the genus Arctostaphylos, belonging to the family Ericaceae, native to the northern North America, Asia and Europe. The herb has been used in traditional medicine as diuretic agent and to treat urinary problems, including bladder infections, kidney infection, kidney stone, pelvic pain, etc.

The Ingredients
It contains arbutin, ursolic acid, tannic acid, gallic acid, some essential oil and resin, hydroquinones tannins,  phenolic glycosides and flavonoids.

1. Herbal Arctostaphylos uva-ursi  and high blood pressure
Blood pressure is the force of blood pushing against the walls of the arteries as the heart pumps out blood. High blood pressure means raising pressure in your heart.If it stays high over time it can damage the body in many ways.
Blood pressure medications have undoubtedly prevented many deaths from heart disease in the past 30 years, but they have many side effects such as damaging the kidney. If you can control your diet, such as making changes to lifestyle, maintaining ideal weight and diet with low salt, you could do just fine without the drugs.

The benefits
Many herbs have been used to lower high blood pressure by enhancing the urinary flow in alternative medicine and bear berry is one of them. The leaf of The leaves of Vaccinium arctostaphylos has been used in Iran' folk medicine for the treatment of hypertension. In the the study of the possible hypotensive activity of aqueous extract of Vaccinium arctostaphylos leaves in rat model of two-kidney, one-clip hypertension, a higher dose the extract did have hypotensive activity without changing the heart rate. Other study also indicated that Aqueous extracts of Sambucus nigra and Arctostaphylos uva-ursi and hydroalcohol extracts of Orthosiphon stamineus revealed that they led to an increase in urine flow.

References
1. The effects of aqueous extract of vaccinium arctostaphylos leaves on blood pressure in renal hypertensive rats. by Khalili A, Khosravi MB, Nekooeian AA.(PubMed)
2. Effect of extracts of Orthosiphon stamineus Benth, Hieracium pilosella L., Sambucus nigra L. and Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (L.) Spreng. in rats.
Beaux D, Fleurentin J, Mortier F.(PubMed)

2. Herbal Arctostaphylos uva-ursi and Diuretic effect
A diuretic is medication used to elevate the rate of urination 

The Benefits
Because of increased awareness of conventional medication's side effects, there is increasing interest in the health and wellness benefits of herbs and botanicals. Aqueous extracts of Arctostaphylos uva-ursi is found to increase in urine flow with urinary sodium excretion in rats increased with O. stamineus and S. nigra.

References
(1) Effect of extracts of Orthosiphon stamineus Benth, Hieracium pilosella L., Sambucus nigra L. and Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (L.) Spreng. in rats BY Beaux D, Fleurentin J, Mortier F.(PubMed)

3. Arctostaphylos uva-ursi and Bladder cancer
Bladder cancer is most common type of cancer that effect men twice as frequently as it effects women. Usually it starts from the lining the bladder caused by several types of malignant growths of the urinary bladder cells.

The benefits
The search for alternative medicine for treatment of cancers has been growing worldwide, and herbs used in folk medicine may be a potential sources as it induced little or no side effects. Arbutin, a glycosylated hydroquinone extracted from the bearberry plant (Arctostaphylos species), is found significantly decreased TCCSUP human bladder cell proliferation in a concentration- and time-dependent manner by  increased the expression of p21WAF1/CIP1 (p21), which  involved in cell cycle regulation.

References
(1) Arbutin inhibits TCCSUP human bladder cancer cell proliferation via up-regulation of p21  By Li H, Jeong YM, Kim SY, Kim MK, Kim DS.(PubMed)


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4. Arctostaphylos uva-ursi and Anti microbial effects
The immune system is the set of cells and their activity against antigens or infectious agents that comprises of the body's defense system against diseases. The immune system does a great job of keeping people healthy and preventing infections. Beside foods and nutritional supplements, herbs also play a important role in helping the immune system defend against viruses and bacteria attacks.

The benefits
Arbutine from Arctostaphylos uva ursi has been found to be effective as non-antibiotic drugs in treating diseases induced by bacteria, caused by S. aureus, E. coli, P. aeruginosa and C. albicans. Also in the study of Extracts of Canadian first nations medicinal plants, including Arctostaphylos uva ursi (kinnikinnick or bearberry), inhibited the growth of all Neisseria gonorrhoeae (Ng)  isolates with minimum inhibitory concentrations of 32 μg/mL, 4 to 32 μg/mL, 16 to >32 μg/mL, and 32 to 64 μg/mL, respectively. Other study on novel acylated caprylic alcohol glycosides (1, 2) produced by Arctostaphylos pumila, showed the exhibited antibacterial activity against Gram-positive methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus with an MIC of 128 microg/mL and 64 microg/mL, respectively.

References
(1) Examination of antimicrobial activity of selected non-antibiotic drugs by Kruszewska H, Zareba T, Tyski S.(PubMed)
(2) Extracts of Canadian first nations medicinal plants, used as natural products, inhibit neisseria gonorrhoeae isolates with different antibiotic resistance profiles. by Cybulska P, Thakur SD, Foster BC, Scott IM, Leduc RI, Arnason JT, Dillon JA.(PubMed)
(3) Miniaturization of the structure elucidation of novel natural products--two trace antibacterial acylated caprylic alcohol glycosides from Arctostaphylos pumila by Hu JF, Yoo HD, Williams CT, Garo E, Cremin PA, Zeng L, Vervoort HC, Lee CM, Hart SM, Goering MG, O'Neil-Johnson M, Eldridge GR.(PubMed)

5. Arctostaphylos uva-ursi as antioxidants
A free radical is any atom or molecule that has a single unpaired electron in an outer shell and highly reactive to react with other cell, which in turn, causes oxidative damage to the enzymes, other protein, unsaturated fatty acid, phospho-lipids, DNA and RNA, etc., leading to aging of the organisms, as a result of widespread damage due to set of a chain reaction auto-catalytically after attacking the lipid bilayers of the cell walls.

The benefits
In the evaluation of the antioxidant effect regard to single dose of plant extracts and their concentration in human organism, indicated that Arctostaphylos uva. was found to be less effective when compare to Hypericum perforatum, Potentilla erectra,  Ledum palustre, Plantago major, Salvia officinalis > Chamomilla recutita. Other in the study of Modulatory effects of resveratrol, citroflavan-3-ol, and plant-derived extracts, Etoposide-induced oxidative stress was strongly reduced by olive leaf extract and bearberry. Also, The extracts of A. patula and A. viscida from Arctostaphylos plants showed potent inhibition against tyrosinase as it not only inhibited the production of melanin from dopachrome by autoxidation, but exhibited SOD (superoxide dismutase)-like activity and had a moderate absorbance in the UV-B area.

References
(1) [Antioxidant properties of plant extracts].
[Article in Russian] by Bol'shakova IV, Lozovskaia EL, Sapezhinskiĭ II.(PubMed)
(2) Modulatory effects of resveratrol, citroflavan-3-ol, and plant-derived extracts on oxidative stress in U937 cells by O'Brien NM, Carpenter R, O'Callaghan YC, O'Grady MN, Kerry JP.(PubMed)

(3) Studies of cuticle drugs from natural sources. IV. Inhibitory effects of some Arctostaphylos plants on melanin biosynthesis. by Matsuda H, Higashino M, Nakai Y, Iinuma M, Kubo M, Lang FA.(PubMed)


6. Arctostaphylos uva-ursi and antiinflammatory activities
Inflammation is a condition of Immune system self-protection to remove harmful stimuli, including damaged cells, irritants, pathogens... from our body.

The benefits
Water extract (UW-ext) collected from the the leaf of Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (L.) Spreng (Bearberry leaf), is found to exhibit its anti-inflammatory effects in ear swelling by picryl chloride-induced contact dermatitis (PC-CD) and carrageenin-induced paw edema. Arbutin isolated from the leaves of Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (L.) Spreng., when combined with and indomethacin on Type IV allergic reaction-induced immuno-inflammation, carrageenin-induced edema and adjuvant-induced arthritis, found to be effective as arbutin may increase the inhibitory action of indomethacin on PC-CD, SRBC-DTH, carrageenin-induced edema and adjuvant-induced arthritis, but further investigations are required to understand the mechanism involved. Other study also indicated that 50% methanolic extract (U-ext), containing arbutin, possesses a therapeutic effect against immuno-inflammation induced by  by picryl chloride (PC-CD) and also increases the inhibitory effect of prednisolone.

References
(1) [Pharmacological studies on leaf of Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (L.) Spreng. V. Effect of water extract from Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (L.) Spreng. (bearberry leaf) on the antiallergic and antiinflammatory activities of dexamethasone ointment].[Article in Japanese] by Matsuda H, Nakamura S, Tanaka T, Kubo M.(PubMed)
(2) [Pharmacological studies on leaf of Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (L.) Spreng. III. Combined effect of arbutin and indomethacin on immuno-inflammation].[Article in Japanese] by Matsuda H, Tanaka T, Kubo M.(PubMed)
(3) [Pharmacological studies on leaf of Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (L.) Spreng. I. Combined effect of 50% methanolic extract from Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (L.) Spreng. (bearberry leaf) and prednisolone on immuno-inflammation].[Article in Japanese] by Kubo M, Ito M, Nakata H, Matsuda H.(PubMed)

7. Arctostaphylos uva-ursi and Antiallergic activities
Allergy is the over reaction of immune system to harmless substances after entering our body affecting 1 in every 3 people.

The benefits
Water extract (UW-ext) from the leaf of Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (L.) Spreng (Bearberry leaf) found to be increase significantly in the inhibitory effect of dexamethasone on the allergic testing. Arbutin, the major component of Arctostaphylos uva-ursi with at dose of 50 mg/kg 24 h after the application rapidly decreased the swelling of PC-CD  caused by picryl chloride (PC-CD).

References

(1) [Pharmacological studies on leaf of Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (L.) Spreng. V. Effect of water extract from Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (L.) Spreng. (bearberry leaf) on the antiallergic and antiinflammatory activities of dexamethasone ointment].[Article in Japanese] by Matsuda H, Nakamura S, Tanaka T, Kubo M.(PubMed)
(2) [Pharmacological studies on leaf of Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (L.) Spreng. III. Combined effect of arbutin and indomethacin on immuno-inflammation].[Article in Japanese] by Matsuda H, Tanaka T, Kubo M.(PubMed)

7. Arctostaphylos uva-ursi  and diabetes
Diabetes is defined as a condition caused by insufficient insulin entering the bloodstream to regulate the glucose. It is either caused by cells in pancreas dying off or receptor sites clogged up by fat and cholesterol. In some cases, diabetes is also caused by allergic reactions of cells in the immune system.

The benefits
Arctostaphylos uva-ursi, one of the herbal plant used in treating diabetes was tested in streptozotocin diabetic mice with treatments supplied as 6.25% by weight of the diet for 9 days, showed to counter some of the symptoms of streptozotocin diabetes without, however, affecting glycemic control.

References
(1) Evaluation of traditional plant treatments for diabetes: studies in streptozotocin diabetic mice by Swanston-Flatt SK, Day C, Bailey CJ, Flatt PR.(PubMed)

8. Herbal Arctostaphylos uva-ursi and Gastric Cancer
Stomach cancer or gastric cancer is defined as condition of abnormal growth of the mucus-producing cells of the inside lining of the stomach. Adenocarcinoma is the most common type of stomach cancer.

The Ingredients It contains arbutin, ursolic acid, tannic acid, gallic acid, some essential oil and resin, hydroquinones tannins,  phenolic glycosides and flavonoids.

The benefits
Ursolic acid, extracted from bearberry has found to exert its effect in inhibition of cell growth and induction of apoptosis in gastric cancer. The induction of gastric cell apoptosis through a a translocation of cofilin-1 protein (involved in the translocation of actin-cofilin complex) from the cytoplasm (the substance that fills the cell.) to the mitochondria (The power sources) to promoted the release of cytochrome c (a small heme protein found loosely associated with the inner membrane of the mitochondrion) from the mitochondria to the cytoplasm, thereby activating the caspase cascade (routes from cell surface and the other from mitochondria) and finally inducing apoptosis of gastric cancer BGC-823 cell line. These suggested that the mitochondrial translocation of cofilin-1 might play a crucial role in the promotion of apoptosis and might be a key target for future treatment of human gastric cancer.

References
(1) Mitochondrial translocation of cofilin-1 promotes apoptosis of gastric cancer BGC-823 cells induced by ursolic acid by Tang Q, Ji Q, Tang Y, Chen T, Pan G, Hu S, Bao Y, Peng W, Yin P.(PubMed)
  
9. Herbal Arctostaphylos uva-ursi and endometrial cancer
Endometrium is the inner lining of the mammalian uterus and very susceptible hormone change, particular to menstrual cycle. Endometrial cancer is a late adulthood cancer defined as a condition of which the cells of the endometrial lining of uterus have growth uncontrollable or become cancerous as a result of the alternation of cells DNA. It's the fourth most common cancer among women overall, after breast cancer, lung cancer, and bowel cancer.

The benefits
Ursolic acid, a pentacyclic triterpene acid, extracted from bearberry is found to be effective in inhibition of the growth of endometrial cancer cell HEC108 line, in a dose- and time-dependent manner. As exposure of Ursolic acid decreased the anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 protein levels (member of the Bcl-2 family of regulator proteins that regulate cell death) but increased Bax expression (upregulated by the tumor suppressor protein p53,) through a mitochondrial pathway, of that induced apoptosis of endometrial cancer HEC108 line. Other in the study of the same but with inendometrial cancer SNG-II cells, ursolic acid strongly inhibited the growth of SNG-II cells in a dose- and time-dependent manner. The induced apoptotic processes in the endometrial cancer SNG-II cells is also involved mitochondrial pathways and Bcl-2 family proteins.

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References
(1) Molecular mechanism of ursolic acid induced apoptosis in poorly differentiated endometrial cancer HEC108 cells by Achiwa Y, Hasegawa K, Udagawa Y.(PubMed)
(2) Ursolic acid induces Bax-dependent apoptosis through the caspase-3 pathway in endometrial cancer SNG-II cells by Achiwa Y, Hasegawa K, Komiya T, Udagawa Y.(PubMed)


The Side effect
1. Overdoses may cause gastrointestinal discomfort, including cause nausea, vomiting, etc. and fever, chills, severe back pain, ringing in the ears, etc.
2. The herb may interact with other medicine, including diuretic
3. Do not use the herb in new born, children or if you are pregnant or breast feeding without approval from the related field specialist.
4. Etc.